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Thread: Help! Atari 800XL cartridge port issues

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    Cherry (Level 1) Custom rank graphic
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    Default Help! Atari 800XL cartridge port issues

    I have a Atari 800XL that is having trouble recognizing game cartridges some of the time.

    By that I mean that every second or third time I plug in a game cartridge, it goes to either the BASIC screen or the self-test screen.

    If I press down on the left side (logo side) of the top of the machine, it usually manages to recognize cartridges fine. As soon as I stop pressing, the graphics become garbled.

    Does anyone have an idea of what's wrong with this machine or how to fix it?

    Thanks!

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    Banana (Level 7) Atarileaf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neb6 View Post
    I have a Atari 800XL that is having trouble recognizing game cartridges some of the time.

    By that I mean that every second or third time I plug in a game cartridge, it goes to either the BASIC screen or the self-test screen.

    If I press down on the left side (logo side) of the top of the machine, it usually manages to recognize cartridges fine. As soon as I stop pressing, the graphics become garbled.

    Does anyone have an idea of what's wrong with this machine or how to fix it?

    Thanks!
    Could be as simple as the games and cart connector needing a good cleaning to a bent pin on the connector or cold or broken solder on the cart connector, which would explain why you're getting temporary contact when pressing down on one side.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Atarileaf View Post
    Could be as simple as the games and cart connector needing a good cleaning to a bent pin on the connector or cold or broken solder on the cart connector, which would explain why you're getting temporary contact when pressing down on one side.
    Thanks.

    Well, there's certainly something with a dodgy connection in there. I tried opening it up and pressing down on all the RAM chips (they're socketed), and that really improved things. Still not 100% though.

    The board itself looks good. Then again, I'm not exactly a wizard at spotting hairline cracks and things like that.

    Anyone have any tips on how to check the health of a motherboard?

    I should mention that the RAM tests as good. All in the green!

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    Banana (Level 7) Atarileaf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neb6 View Post
    Thanks.

    Well, there's certainly something with a dodgy connection in there. I tried opening it up and pressing down on all the RAM chips (they're socketed), and that really improved things. Still not 100% though.

    The board itself looks good. Then again, I'm not exactly a wizard at spotting hairline cracks and things like that.

    Anyone have any tips on how to check the health of a motherboard?

    I should mention that the RAM tests as good. All in the green!
    If you're not getting any good recommendations here, I'd try Atariage if you haven't already. There's a dedicated Atari 8-bit section where you could post this and perhaps get some help there. Pictures always help too if you can take pics of closeups of both sides of the board

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    Pear (Level 6) ApolloBoy's Avatar
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    Did you try cleaning your games at all?
    Quote Originally Posted by starsoldier1 View Post
    GUY WAS SUPPOSE TO PLAYABLE IN THE GAME
    My collection

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    Smile

    Yep.

    You guys were right.

    It was dirty contacts on the cartridges.

    You should have seen all the stuff that I removed from them. No wonder they where making the machine go bonkers.

    Thanks very much for the help!




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    Banana (Level 7) Atarileaf's Avatar
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    You're able to play some great games on a great computer - that's thanks enough

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